The Unlikely Project

As the year 2022 closes out and 2023 begins, I find myself at a crossroads.

I have finished writing a My Little Pony fanfiction, The Master Mev, that is over 275,000 words, which is similar to writing a long novel. The word “long” is a relative term here and compared to what I’ve read of beginner authors trying to get published. I wish I could have finished earlier, but I needed time and space to work on other things or shift focus at times.

I have been waiting for this point mainly for a new project that takes me by surprise.

My favorite MLP fanfic is the Austraeoh series written by Imploding Colon, also known as shortskirtsandexplosions. The series is incomplete and spans over 3 million words. I have never read a series this long, for anything. Often, once I read the first book in a series, that is enough for me.

Due to my Rainbow Dash obsession and longing for something to let her be awesome, well…Austraeoh fills that wish quite extensively. It’s not all perfect, but it’s still a story I enjoy a great deal. So much so, that I have wanted to do an audiobook reading of it for years. I have, in fact, done an audiobook reading of my favorite chapter in my favorite book already.

Anyway, so I just find it weird and I confess, a little questionable, that this is the project I want to do with my time. You see, Austraeoh is long. It is so, so long. I don’t want to do only the first book. I want to do all except the currently incomplete one, Ofolrodi. The series could remain incomplete at its current point. By my calculations of handling chapters for my own fanfiction, working on such a project is something I might not finish before I die. It is not impossible to finish, but it is highly unlikely.

Yet…I *still* want to do it.

Why? Don’t I want to do other things with my time? Animate, draw, play video games, write more stories? Of course! Yes! So very much yes! One of the things that truly shocks me about this desire is that an audiobook is auditory. I’ve always thought of myself as more inclined to visual projects, even if, when I truly think about things, writing can be found in either such form and is what I feel most comfortable at in the hobbies I spend time on. I usually read my work through the visual way and save editing it through speaking aloud quite far into a draft, for fictional chapters. I certainly never read it aloud for a post like this one.

I guess audiobooks do give me a chance for acting, which is another hobby and what I longed to do when I was a kid. I wanted to be a famous movie star, which admittedly, this type of project will not lead to that path. Still, acting *is* fun.

Anyway, I’m just a little down about what I am possibly giving up by choosing “Austraeoh audiobook reading” over so much else. At the same time, much else is in the calculation of how long the reading will take. I have admitted to myself that the project is so impossibly massive, I *cannot* abandon what needs to be done, such as basic chores at home.

With this very important factor in my head, I have actually been cleaning and tidying more at the house, in a very good, productive way, that makes me genuinely proud. This strange calling is helping me focus those things. And, I will hopefully, somehow, some way, make time for those other hobbies too. Some things will have to be given up, and that’s what makes me sad. I will figure them out as time goes on.

Something else I don’t necessarily *want* to do but am considering is looking for a means of passive income, either through POD designs online or writing books. Writing books somehow feels more possible with the completion of my most recent fanfic. The main issue with writing books for money is it might take some of the fun out of writing, which I mainly do as a hobby. Of course, that still might not make money if no one buys the books. This whole idea stems from not really seeing a retirement in my future. The amount of passive income I’ve made so far would never make up for it, but if I were more committed, maybe that could change. That’s what it comes down to, though, isn’t it? Is that something I wish to commit to? So far, no.

But…there’s another part of me that thinks I’m going through a phase. I’ll do this Austraeoh audiobook project for awhile, get tired of it, and move on. I do see this result as the most likely one. The part that doubts it is the part that’s been waiting years to do it at all and motivating me to take care of the house. Regardless of how it goes, I won’t be short on ideas of what to do. Commitment is the true question, and it is one answered with time. I won’t resent myself if I give it up. I know how truly big of a project it is, and the other doors that open in turn. I might slightly resent myself if I stick to it, but not enough to stop myself. It’s a calling I want to and will answer…for now anyway.